Tuesday, November 11, 2014

How can I Heal my Brittle and Weak Nails?

Nails can become weaker because of several things. Pregnancy, hormonal imbalances, diabetes, cancer and medications are just a few things that can lead to brittle finger nails. So now that you have weak finger nails how can you heal them and make them feel better? Or how can you prevent them from getting weak in the first place? I have the answers!

1 - Cut your Nails!
Don't let your nails get to long, because they will break off eventually. Cut them regularly to keep them strong.

2 - File your Nails EVERY TIME! 
After cutting your nails you have to file them, every single time. Otherwise you leave snags and little rough spots. You need to make sure you file them into a nice oval or rounded shape to prevent getting ingrown nails. 

3 - Stop Biting Them!
I know you've heard it before (especially if you are a nail bitter), but biting nails really is terrible for them. It leaves scratches and dents in the nails surface and an uneven unfinished edge that can be hard to file down. 

4 - No Acrylics
If you have acrylic nails it will take a long time of going without acrylics to get them back into shape. Otherwise if you are thinking of getting acrylics nails just know that you are kissing your finger nail health goodbye! 

5 - Wear Gloves
Chemicals and Detergents found in most household cleaning products can weaken and damage your nails. Wear gloves whenever possible while cleaning. If you don't like the big ugly rubber ones that people usually wear for cleaning I'd go to Sally's Beauty or your local beauty supply store and get disposable gloves for perming or putting on hair color. They are more comfortable, flexible and have a closer fit. Vinyl is the best option for your nails (over latex or rubber). 

6 - Take Care of Hangnails the Right Way!
The worst thing to do with hangnails are to pick them or pull them. Instead use fine scissors to clip the hang nail as short as possible and then an over the counter antibiotic ointment (like neosporin) to keep it from getting infected

7 - Moisturize!
After taking a shower, washing your hands, or anything else use moisturizer or lotion on your hands. It will help keep the nail from drying out. But if you have an infection you will want to keep them dry, so be conscious of your nails state of health. 

8 - Be Careful with the Nail Polish Remover
Acetone (which is found in most nail polish removers) is very drying and is not good to use on your nail (unless it's infected). If you need to remove polish it is fine, but try to use it less than once a week, and remember to moisturize after. 

9 - Biotin
Biotin can help your nails get the vitamins they need to be strong and healthy. Taking a Biotin supplement or a hair skin and nails supplement can help. 

10 - Nail Treatments
There are lots of nail treatment sets and kits and most of them help by providing healing oils to your cuticle and nail and the skin surrounding it.

***Thanks to Suzanne Parise for asking this question***

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Does Blow Drying my Hair Damage It?

In a word, yes. Any time you apply heat to your hair you are damaging it to some degree. Even going out in the sun on a hot summer day can take a hit to your hair. But there are some super easy things you can do to protect it.

1 - Use a Heat Protectant
I know! I say this all the time. You are thinking "Angela, you are so boring, you always say the same stuff!" I get it. But I say this a lot because it is important and often overlooked. Here are a few of my favorite heat protectants. (click the name of the product to learn more about it)

For Hot Tools - Redken Iron Shape 11
For Blow Dryers - Redken Satinwear 02
For Sun - TIGI Bed Head Straighten Out

2 - Use a Cool Shot
Apply heat to your hair causes the cuticle layer to open up. By using cold air you help it close and smooth down a little more. It will also help you maintain height, volume and set the style you create while blow drying your hair.

3 - Don't Do It if you Don't Have ToIf you shower after doing some yard work all Saturday and the rest of your evening's itinerary consists of Netflix and ice cream sandwiches, don't blow dry your hair. Even if it will be smoother and more controlled follow my steps for helping your hair air dry smoother, and give your hair a break!